Review of The Final Summit: A Quest to Find the One Principle That Will Save Humanity by Andy Andrews

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Genre: Allegorical Fiction/Motivational

Not Recommended!

The Final Summit is an interesting read. It fails, however, to offer a biblical perspective, and when I read Christian literature that’s the one thing which matters most.

The premise of the story is that God is mad at the world and planning to destroy it unless humanity can restore itself. There is a summit held in the heavenlies where prominent historical figures from all time (not necessarily Christian) and our ordinary hero, David Ponder, meet to “find the one principle that will save humanity.” I love the concept of historical figures coming together to discuss and learn from each other, and some (but not most) of the dialog was really interesting. The writing itself, unfortunately, was only okay: not riveting, not well researched, and predictable. And the theology was–well, it was like asking random people on the street what they think of God and recording its essence without ever having read the Bible.

These were the major theological problems I saw: 1) the nature and character of God in the story do not line up with the God of the Bible, 2) the characters are in heaven and yet God is not central to their thoughts or conversation–even after meeting God at close physical proximity they engage in humanistic, self-centered, thinking, and 3) there is only one thing that can save humanity–Jesus!–but this is not what the story’s heavenly summit found.

Even as a secular book, The Final Summit is only mediocre, but as a Christian motivational message it completely misses the mark.

I received a complimentary copy of this book as a part of the Thomas Nelson Book Review Blogging Program through booksneeze.com.

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Review of My Foolish Heart by Susan May Warren

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Genre: Christian Romantic Fiction

Series: Book Four of the Deep Haven Series

Recommended.

This is more than a typical romance novel! Isadora Presley is an agoraphobic radio talk show host still dealing with the pain of an accident, which took her mother and debilitated her father. Caleb Knight is a young disabled veteran back from Iraq hoping to coach high school football and blend into the small town of Deep Haven. Of course they fall in love–it’s a romance after all–but in the process they work through pains, insecurities and fears, and discover God’s overwhelming grace. There are a couple other main characters as well, whose stories accentuate and compliment the hero and heroine.

This is a lighthearted, easy read, which excellently portrays God’s love, redemption, and grace within the hurts and struggles of life. The characters are well developed and the plot is only as predictable as it needs to be–that is, there are enough surprises to keep it interesting, while still allowing for the story to develop in the way every romantic hopes. My Foolish Heart is also part of Warren’s Deep Haven Series, so the reader who enjoys this book, will likely enjoy the others as well; I have only read the one, and it felt complete in itself.

I received a complimentary copy of this book as a part of the Tyndale Blog Network.

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Miracles Among the Homeless

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I have been so encouraged in watching the mighty works of the Lord through my good friend as she (and now others with her) minister to the homeless in our area.

She started passing out lunches to homeless people–no big thing, in her mind–which moved into also eating lunch with the homeless, and eventually–to her surprise–became a larger thing: other people wanting to come and share in what the Lord is doing, others (even local businesses) donating food, clothing, and such to the “ministry” and still more coming to minister outright. The ministry is still young, but already they have had opportunities to lead people to know Jesus, and to see signs and wonders as He demonstrates His love among them. Here are a couple accounts of the miracles that have taken place among them:

Not too long ago, as they gathered, homeless people continued coming to them, so that they didn’t have enough food. But they read one of the stories of Jesus multiplying the loaves and fishes, prayed over the meal, and as they served the food, they witnessed it multiplying. The Lord provided so much that just as in the biblical accounts they had leftovers–even though there was not enough in the beginning. (And hungry people don’t exactly eat meager portions if they can help it.)  There was more than enough!

Another day, my friend put too much water in the coffee, and by the time they noticed, it was too late to fix it. She reports that it tasted TERRIBLE–more like water than coffee–but as her and another gal watched the homeless people drinking it down, they apologized to one man that it was so bad, and he responded in surprise. It was very strong coffee, he said, and very good. The Lord had changed hot water into strong coffee, and they hadn’t even asked for it. God knows what we need!

Miracles like these aren’t rare. One homeless man shared that God always supplies his needs. One time, he told them, he asked God for something very specific, and when he opened the dumpster, he found it right on top! When needs are prevalent, and faith is childlike, miracles happen.

I love you dear friend.  Thank you for walking faithfully before the Lord.  You have shown me that signs and wonders follow obedience and humility regardless of our expectations. :)

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